Sinead's Feed
Oct 22, 2013

Fund firms wrestle with “star manager” syndrome

LONDON, Oct 22 (Reuters) – Neil Woodford’s surprise
announcement last week of his planned departure from fund
manager Invesco Perpetual neatly encapsulates the risks to fund
firms who employ such star managers and the investors who back
them.

They can leave.

Woodford, widely feted for a defensive stock-picking style
that made money throughout the financial crisis, is responsible
for running around 30 billion pounds ($48.5 billion) of assets,
out of the firm’s 70 billion total.

Oct 18, 2013

Burned-out fund managers show reality of City life’s “easy option”

LONDON (Reuters) – When Sanjeev Shah quit his job last month, eyebrows were raised. This wasn’t another burned-out banker: The 43-year-old was a successful fund manager running 2.8 billion pounds ($4.5 billion) for Fidelity Worldwide Investment, reaping big returns.

His reasons for leaving – “This is a role that demands 110 percent effort, focus and intensity. I don’t want that level of intensity” – shed rare light on an industry often dismissed as the easy option in the world of finance.

Oct 15, 2013

Dark pool stock trading picks up as Europe debates new curbs

LONDON, Oct 15 (Reuters) – Fund managers are trading more
assets on private exchanges known as dark pools, a growing trend
that clashes with regulators’ mission to improve financial
market transparency.

Dark pools are electronic trading networks that allow
investors to buy and sell stocks anonymously, in private deals
so other shareholders are not aware of the trades. Some of the
details are made public but only after the market has closed.

Oct 15, 2013

Star fund manager Neil Woodford to leave Invesco

LONDON, Oct 15 (Reuters) – Neil Woodford, one of the
investment industry’s most closely watched fund managers, will
leave Invesco Perpetual to start his own business after a
25-year career that has given him an almost cult following among
British investors.

Invesco Perpetual said on Tuesday the high-profile money
manager is to leave on April 29. He will be replaced by Mark
Barnett as the firm’s head of UK equities, and take over
management of Woodford’s two funds.

Sep 19, 2013

UK watchdog proposes shake-up of poor value pensions

LONDON (Reuters) – A UK watchdog has unveiled proposals to shake up the 275 billion-pound ($439 billion) defined-contribution pensions market, parts of which offers poor value for money for up to 5 million savers.

The Office of Fair Trading OFT.UL (OFT) has stepped in to increase confidence in workplace pension schemes and bolster efforts by the British government to get more people to save for retirement, relieving pressure on taxpayers.

Sep 6, 2013

Analysis: Fed shift complicates Syria crisis trading strategy

LONDON (Reuters) – Some investors trying to protect themselves from any market gyrations provoked by a deepening Syrian crisis are looking to oil as an alternative to top-rated government bonds, a traditional but currently unappealing haven in uncertain times.

With U.S. Treasuries and German bunds on course for their biggest annual losses since the mid-1990s, oil is being touted as a better bet – although many investors remain ready to endure some short-term pain in return for the liquidity that the huge government bond markets offer.

Sep 3, 2013

Bumper Vodafone sale to help UK stocks

LONDON (Reuters) – Shares in other telecoms companies, stocks with high dividends and firms eyeing share sales may all get a boost when UK-focused fund managers redeploy cash from Vodafone’s sale of Verizon Wireless.

Barclays (BARC.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), Lloyds Banking Group (LLOY.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), BT Group (BT.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) could be among the London-listed beneficiaries when Vodafone (VOD.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) shareholders get $84 billion from the sale of its stake in Verizon Wireless to Verizon Communications.

Aug 30, 2013

Vodafone investors split on best use of Verizon windfall

LONDON (Reuters) – Top investors in Vodafone Group (VOD.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) are set to clash over what the company should do with perhaps as much as $130 billion in proceeds from the sale of its stake in Verizon Wireless, which is expected to be announced imminently.

Vodafone shareholders contacted by Reuters as talks continued between the British firm and Verizon Communications (VZ.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) were split between those wanting to see the cash returned as dividends and those wanting the firm to invest it.

Aug 22, 2013

Activist investor Bramson stands down as F&C chairman

LONDON, Aug 22 (Reuters) – Activist investor Edward Bramson
has stepped down as chairman of F&C Asset Management,
the fund firm he took control of in a 2011 boardroom coup, after
reshuffling its strategy and management team.

The press-shy veteran investor, who has built a reputation
for boosting performance at struggling quoted companies, has
relinquished the role after completing a turnaround programme
aimed at improving F&C’s earnings and lifting its flagging
shares, a source close to the company said.

Aug 21, 2013

Lloyds Banking sells German life insurer for $400 mln

LONDON, Aug 21 (Reuters) – British lender Lloyds Banking
Group has sold German life insurer Heidelberger Leben
to private equity group Cinven and reinsurer Hannover Re
for around 300 million euros ($400 million), raising
hopes that the state-rescured bank is moving closer to restoring
its dividend.

The deal, which will boost Lloyds’ core capital by 400
million pounds, and the separate sale on Wednesday for 254
million pounds of a portfolio of leveraged loans, helps
strengthen the bank’s balance sheet and could accelerate
government plans to start selling down its 39 percent stake,
analysts said.